Case Studies

AdStage Case Study

Sector: Adtech
Deployment: 3 clusters totalling 80+ nodes
Technology: Apache Cassandra on AWS


AdStage is a technology company building advanced tools to help businesses and agencies of all sizes advertise more effectively. The AdStage Platform brings together usability, smart design, and intelligent technology to help advertisers make sense of their ad data and optimize their campaigns. By taking a cross-network approach and integrating the major search and social advertising networks, AdStage enables customers to spend more time on their businesses rather than reporting and analyzing all of their spend and performance on individual delivery networks.


AdStage analyzes a vast amount of data from five major advertising networks, and its automation tools are constantly monitoring performance trends and optimizing campaigns on behalf of advertisers. For AdStage, having downtime is not an option, and to add to this constraint, any significant latency means that the platform cannot deliver the ideal solution to customers, effectively meaning that the product is down. AdStage also needed a solution that allows the platform to scale rapidly. Integrating a new customer to the platform can mean literally adding terabytes of data within a short time span. The company is currently experiencing massive data growth due to rapid growth in customers and the resulting added data needs.


Ultimately Apache Cassandra delivered the operational speed that AdStage needed to ensure that the platform has low latency and the required throughput. Cassandra’s high availability architecture ensured that they didn’t have any single point of failure in the environment. In addition, Cassandra’s ability to simply scale by adding more nodes means that they had covered all of their requirements. Having a managed service looking after the application’s Cassandra clusters allowed the AdStage engineering team to concentrate on their customers and to get the most value out of customer data sets.

Migrating to Open Source Apache Cassandra

During the early stages of AdStage development, the company participated in the DataStax Startup Program, and their large production cluster was deployed on DataStax Enterprise. While AdStage met the conditions of being a startup there were no licensing fees associated with their production deployment.

As the company went through a considerable growth phase AdStage was nearing the point where the company would no longer qualify for the DataStax Startup Program and as such were facing the prospect of having to pay considerable licensing fees as the production deployment was now over 80 nodes.

The proposed increase in operational costs for AdStage was prohibitive and unsustainable. A decision was made to transition to the open source version of Apache Cassandra, which includes all the functionality required by AdStage.

The Instaclustr technical operations team worked with the AdStage engineering team to transition every node in both production and staging environments to the open source version of Apache Cassandra, and with the Instaclustr managed solution this was all achieved with zero downtime.

AdStage have been able to continually rely on the expertize and continued support of the Instaclustr Tech Ops team when dealing with large data ingestion and the application’s scaling requirements.